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Hospital Discharges

Volume 404: debated on Thursday 8 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will estimate the number of NHS beds which could be released by programmes of earlier planned discharges. [111180]

There has been a continued reduction in delayed discharges in England since September 2001 freeing up national health service capacity. The latest figures show that in December 2002, there were 4,586 people delayed on any one day, compared to 7,065 in September 2001. The provisions of the Community Care (Delayed Discharges etc) Act 2003 will ensure that this reduction continues, to reach the target of minimal delays by 2006.